A woman reportedly used a knife Saturday to open packages of cell phones in a local store so that she could shoplift them, while another shoplifter says he returned the items he had taken.
Officer Lynn McCulley reported Saturday that she went to Kmart on South Virginia Avenue in reference to the shoplifter. When she arrived on the scene, she noticed two black males outside the entrance talking to a white male who matched the description of the subject given out by loss prevention.
She made contact with loss prevention and another employee who were trying to get the suspect back inside the store. The offender, Lee James Lassetter, 22, of Chula, was being very uncooperative and began to try to walk away. McCulley reported that she grabbed his left arm and told him to go inside. She said Lassetter kept saying not to touch him and began to try and pull away. She told him to get on the ground and he began to fight. They struggled and Lassetter was able to push McCulley on the ground and break away.
McCulley reported that she got up and began to chase Lassetter and soon Sgt. Dorminey McCrae was also on the scene. Lassetter ran across the Kmart parking lot, down through a ditch and across the next lot toward the back of Golden Corral.
He attempted to jump the small fence that separates the back of the restaurant from the parking lot behind the building of the Yellow Monkey yogurt shop.
McCrae pulled into the parking lot and was able to get to Lassetter as he was trying to jump the fence. At that time, he grabbed the offender around the chest and McCulley grabbed his waist. McCrae was able to get Lassetter secured on the ground while McCulley placed handcuffs on him.